Ivy Saturday roundup

Penn 50, Princeton 48

Any roundup of Saturday’s Ivy action has to include Penn’s white-knuckle win over Princeton on the women’s side. Penn (10-2, 1-0 Ivy) prevailed for its home win over Princeton (11-4, 0-1) since 2008 by shutting down the Tigers defensively, holding Princeton to just one field goal in the final 4:16 and turning the Tigers away twice in the final eight seconds of the game. Junior center Sydney Stipanovich finished with 12 points, 11 rebounds, three blocks and three assists for the Quakers, who Princeton to 17-for-62 (27.4 percent) shooting with a formidable 2-3 zone that Princeton coach Courtney Banghart curiously called a “junior high school” level zone after the game.

Harvard 77, Dartmouth 70 The Crimson (7-8, 1-0) ended the game on a 14-8 run in the final 3:23, powered by senior guard Agunwa Okolie’s 10 points in that span. Okolie notched 29 points on 9-for-11 shooting, and fellow senior guard Patrick Steeves shook off a hyperextended right knee injury to post 20 points on 7-for-13 shooting, including four three-pointers. Sophomore guard Miles Wright and freshman forward Evan Boudreaux combined for 44 of Dartmouth’s 70 points, and Wright stood out especially on the defensive end of the floor for the Big Green (4-9, 0-1), posting four steals and three blocks. Harvard stuck to its formula, relying on three-pointers (from Steeves) and solid second-half defense.

Princeton 73, Penn 71 (OT)

The Tigers (10-4, 1-0) got a win they absolutely had to have, but they were taken to the absolute limit by a Quakers (6-8, 0-1) squad without sophomore guard Antonio Woods, who was announced as academically ineligible for the rest of the season just hours before tip-off.

Princeton sophomore guard Amir Bell excelled early and often, eventually notching 28 points, two rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block before leaving the game late in regulation with an apparent head injury. It was freshman guard Devin Cannady, though, who hit an off-kilter floater with 20 seconds left in regulation to tie the game and force overtime. Penn led 64-53 with 3:24 remaining in regulation.

There may have been a few questionable calls that went against Penn down the stretch, but needless to say, Princeton won the game in its own right by successfully trapping Quakers out of their comfort zone and hitting nine of its last 10 free throws. (Princeton did not score a field goal in overtime, but outscored Penn 7-5 in the extra period solely with foul shots.)

Penn fans should be heartened by the play of freshman guard Jake Silpe, who in 42 minutes posted 11 points, seven assists and seven rebounds before fouling out, displaying excellent court awareness throughout the game despite missing a crucial free throw with 34 seconds left in regulation and committing two crucial turnovers in overtime.

Tigers not named Amir Bell shot just 29.8 percent from the floor, a clip that will have to get better as Ivy play progresses. The Penn-Princeton rivalry, when taking into account both the women’s and men’s sides, is still going strong.

In “not really fair” business, Brown and Columbia defeated Division III Daniel Webster and USCAA Division II Central Penn College, respectively.

10 thoughts on “Ivy Saturday roundup

  1. Courtney Banghart has more than once made controversial statements. In fairness to her, she was directing the “junior high zone” comment to her team, calling them out for their failure to solve it and, frankly, their apparent “fear” of it. She was not criticizing Penn’s coaching or its personnel. She was highly complimentary of Penn’s performance, acknowledging their toughness and the fact that they made a lot of plays. I attended the post game interview and am sure I got the context, which is frequently lost in translating Banghart.

  2. I’m always a little surprised when the fans of any winning team take offense to comments made by the coach or players of the losing team right after the game.

    You of course expect the coach or players to be crestfallen in the immediate aftermath of a close loss. When my teams win, I actually kind of like hearing the opponents express some frustration or exasperation. It’s a nice little coda to the game itself. When the losing coach bites his or her tongue and says only vanilla coach-speak platitudes, it’s somewhat disappointing. As a fan, I actually like the fact that Banghart will reveal a little of her emotions. If I were a Penn fan, I’d enjoy her even more.

    It seems Penn fans search very hard for reasons to demonize Princeton players and coaches. It’s not enough to enjoy the satisfaction of beating a rival. There’s a psychological need to paint them as unsportsmanlike, rather than merely competitive.

    Which is more unusual or more unsportsmanlike? Banghart shooting her mouth off right after the game or McLaughlin tweeting about it hours later? I think that psychological hunger says more about Penn people and their view of the rivalry than anything about Princeton. Yale football fans have the same attitude toward Harvard football. Of course the difference is that Yale fans have to wait a decade or so between Harvard losses. See ya later, suckers.

    Just some food for thought from an amateur psychologist.

    • Wow…cannot believe the angle you took in defending Courtney and the “dig” on coach m, who is a classy individual. Check everything courtney says, it is always about her, not a gracious loser. It’s time someone calls her out on this, includes the comments last year of wanting to receive the ivy trophy at Penn even though they clinched previously, her comment “Penn took what was ours and we’re going to go back and get it.”. Maybe you define that as competitive…certainly not in the ivy sportsmanlike spirit. Good luck in continuing to try and defend her!

      • B.A., I’m not defending Banghart or anything she said. Please read my post again. Rather, my point is why do the fans of any winning team take offense when the losing team expresses frustration or sadness after the game? When you win, that’s part of the fun.

        I did take a mild jab about McLaughlin, as you say. But again, let’s review the sequence of events. Banghart had the opportunity to take the high road immediately after the game by spouting the usual blather, “Penn played a great game. Congratulations to them. Blah blah blah. . . .” She couldn’t hold her tongue and said more substantive comments, maybe incendiary but, as Toothless Tiger pointed out, possibly not incendiary at all. If I were a Penn fan, I would enjoy hearing my rival express her disappointment.

        Then hours later, McLaughlin also had the opportunity to take the high road. But instead of just the usual, “I’m proud of my team,” he’s got to take some umbrage at Banghart’s comments. I’m not defending Banghart at all, but I do think McLaughlin should have just enjoyed the satisfaction of getting under his opponent’s skin instead of spouting off himself, as inoffensive as his own comments were.

        My broader point is that Penn fans and Yale fans have a problem with Princeton and Harvard, respectively, that Princeton fans and Harvard fans don’t have a problem going the other way. They have a psychological need to imagine their rivals as unsportsmanlike or simply bad people in a way which goes beyond sports. I’m tempted to say that they have a sense of inferiority, but’s too strong a word. They have a sense of something, though.

        Penn women won a huge, huge game Saturday afternoon. That’s reward enough. Listening to Banghart’s anguish afterwards should be enjoyed, not turned into some self-imagined slight, even if it’s not all self-imagined. And if Yale ever, ever beats Harvard again, Bulldog fans should take the same advice.

        • Read through both of your posts, would appear though that your “angle” is about Penn versus the general comment about reaction from winning teams? This did not begin with banghart and one comment post game, this is continued, tiring statements from her that show no respect to anyone, regardless of winning or losing. Sorry, I’m not an ivy league grad so can’t speak to Penn and yale fans and feelings toward Princeton and Harvard. I’ll speak to the “imagine their rivals as unsportsmanlike” comment and have seen too many from Courtney so don’t feel like that it is “imagined.” Absolutely fine with more than “vanilla coach-speak platitudes” post game you refer to, Courtney unfortunately is a frequent abuser of making disrespectful comments. By the way, got a good laugh from your yale-harvard comment, assuming you are a Harvard grad!

          • As an Ivy League graduate and fan (yes, where else would D. Vader go?), I can tell you that one thing our conference needs more than anything is fans who did not attend school here. So if you’re not a Penn alum but cheer for the Quakes, you get a special status in my book and I’ll thank you for your interest and your rooting involvement. And you’re also excused from my amateur psychoanalysis of Penn and Yale fans.

            You are correct that Banghart does not make the same effort to hew to the same bland coach-speak most of her peers do. But if you’re going to let it bother you, confine your irritation to occasions when she beats you. After Saturday’s fantastic and hard-earned win, I would only enjoy the feeling of redemption. McLaughlin is clearly the real deal and Penn will be fine for a long time. Indeed, the bigger risk to the conference is that Banghart leaves for greener pa$ture$ and McLaughin does to the women’s side what Amaker has done to the men’s side.

            It’s hard enough to win in a competitive conference. Don’t let yourself not enjoy it when it happens. For example, even though beating Yale is an annual, almost metronomic event, Harvard fans savor it. We confine our irritation to losing to Penn and Princeton.

  3. Well said, Darth. No knock on McLaughlin, who is a class act as well as a very successful coach. But, I’ll stick with Courtney. My only regret is that she didn’t bring her talents to Princeton as an undergrad.

  4. Just read through all the other comments. We’re all flying off the rails here. If Banghart was going to call her team out the locker room is the place for that, not the press conference. If you think your team did a poor job with something that’s fine, but don’t make a scene about it in front of the media. And she was not just calling out her team for not being able to solve what she described as a “junior high zone”, she was calling out Penn by insulting their zone defense and implying she would have her troops ready to solve it next time. McLaughlin was just responding to Banghart’s comments and defending his team. You can spin it any way you want but the fact is Banghart was letting the rivalry with Penn get the better of her in front of the media. She’s had problems with this in the past. It’s not a one-time thing.

Leave a Comment